How to Create a Group in Signal
If you’ve only just started using Signal, you might be wondering how to create a group. Fortunately, this is a relatively straightforward process. What’s more, creating groups allows you to quickly gather your contacts and share news, ideas, or plan events – all while keeping your conversations secure.
In this article, we’ll provide you with detailed steps on how to create a group in Signal, start a group video call, switch group layouts, and much more besides.
How to Create a Group in Signal
We’ve all witnessed how popular groups have become in the past year. With tons of people being away from their friends and family, groups have become a great way to keep everyone together.
Creating groups on Signal is quite simple. Whether you’re an Android or an iOS user, it’s only a matter of following a few steps.
For Android Users
- Launch Signal on your mobile device.
- Tap the compose button. It’s a blue button with a white pencil inside.
- Select “New group.”
- Go over your contact list and tap on the contact you want to add. You can also add a person by entering their phone number.
Don’t forget that you can only add up to 10 people if you’re making an insecure MMS Group. A New Group can have up to 1,000 members.
- Tap “Next.” It’s the blue circle with an arrow pointing to the right.
- Choose your group type.
You can create an Insecure MMS group for non-Signal contacts. It will say “SMS contact” next to their name. For a Legacy Group, tap on “Learn more” to figure which contacts need a Signal update. New Groups are only available for contacts using an updated Signal version across all devices.
- If you’re making a New or Legacy Group, name your group. Adding a group photo is optional.
- Tap “Create.”
Bonus tips: For Insecure MMS, send a message first for the group to appear in everyone’s chat list. New and Legacy groups appear in the chat list automatically. But their members may need to accept the message request or the invitation first before sending a message.
For iOS Users
- Launch Signal and tap “Compose.” It’s a gray, pencil-shaped icon.
- Tap “New Group.”
- Select contacts you want to add. You can do so by tapping on a contact’s name or by entering their phone number.
- Tap “Next.”
- You can now select a group type. For a Legacy Group, tap “Learn More” to find out which contacts need a Signal update. You can add members to a New Group only if they have an updated version of Signal on all devices.
- Add a Group name as this step is required. Adding a group photo is optional.
- Tap “Create” to finish.
The group will now appear in your and other group members’ chat list. However, some members might need to accept the invitation first before sending a message to the group.
iOS users only have two group options, New Group and Legacy Group.
Unfortunately, Signal doesn’t support creating and managing groups on the Desktop yet. Mentions (@) are also not supported. But you can still receive and send messages from the New and Legacy Groups.
Can You Create a Group Voice or Video Call in Signal?
Yes, absolutely. Signal keeps your group voice or video calls private, just like any other message. Before your first call, Signal will send you a pop-up asking to allow Camera and Mic access.
There are some requirements for your group chat you should be aware of:
• All participants need to have the latest Signal version available installed (Android > version 5.0.3 or beyond; iOS > version 5.0.0 and beyond; Desktop > version 1.39.2 or beyond).
• All participants need to be in the same chat.
• Group calls are limited to eight participants.
How Do I Start a Group Voice or Video Call?
• Head over to the group you want to start a call with.
• Tap on the video recorder icon on the top right of the screen.
• Tap “Start Call” if you’re starting the call or “Join Call” if you’re being invited to one.
• Disable video for a voice call only.
Other group members will now receive a notification. There will also be an alert in the history of your group chat.
Can I Switch Group Layouts?
Yes, if there are at least three participants. Just swipe up and down if you want to switch layouts. You can either set a grid view or the one that will focus on the person speaking at that moment.
How Can I Create a New Group? I Can Only See a Legacy Group banner
To create a New Group, you need to have the latest Signal version installed on your device. If you don’t see a “New Group” option when creating a group, head over to the app store to check for updates. All of your linked devices need to be updated as well.
Bonus tip: If you used Signal on another phone before and it’s still linked, make sure to unlink it.
How Can I Add Someone to a New Group? It Only Shows a Legacy Group
If you can’t add your contact to a New Group, it’s most likely because they aren’t using the latest Signal version. Let your contact know about this issue. They should update Signal across all linked devices for you to be able to add them to the right group.
Why Doesn’t Signal Allow Me to Accept a Group Invite?
If you can’t accept a group invite, close the app and try again. If you still can’t accept it, it’s probably because your current Signal version doesn’t support group calls. You should update your app to the latest version.
Why Can’t I Edit a Group Name, Photo, or Members?
If you are in an insecure MMS group, know that these options are not available.
You can only manage group names, photos, and members for the New Group if you have an admin tag next to your name. You can always look for the group admin in the members’ list and ask them to make you an admin. Or simply request the edit by messaging the admin.
Navigating Signal Groups
Now you should be able to create new groups and start video or voice calls without a hitch. Signal groups are an excellent place for group discussions. All messages you send in a New or Legacy Group are secured and out of sight to third-party eyes. This is why more and more people are heading over to Signal.
Are you a member of any Signal Group? Did your Legacy Group automatically update to a New Group? Let us know in the comments section below.
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